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A Wine of Legend

on December 10th, 2012
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10

Dec

by Sophie Gayot


Since the video interview above is with Richard Geoffroy, the Chef de Cave at Dom Pérignon, I will let him speak about the wine that was exclusively served at the Sun King (Louis XIV)’s court, and that we drink and even spray on each other to celebrate. Champagne bien sûr!


Learn some of the history of monk Pierre Pérignon whose goal was to create a sparkling wine that was “the best wine in the world.” Geoffroy will also give you some pairing advice as we enter the bubbly season.

Continue reading “A Wine of Legend” »


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by Sophie Gayot


The anniversary of the storming of the Bastille fortress-prison which led to “La Révolution Française” on July 14, 1789 has become the French National Day. This year in Los Angeles, the French people also celebrated the inscription in November 2010 of “The Gastronomic Meal of the French” on UNESCO’s Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.


With Consul General David Martinon, I invited local French and French-trained chefs to display their cuisine at a special Bastille Day event in Santa Monica. The crowd was able to enjoy dishes from:
Frédéric Castan, Motif of St. Regis Monarch Beach, who prepared a perfect boeuf bourguignon
Josiah Citrin, Mélisse in Santa Monica, rillettes de canard
Alain Giraud, Maison Giraud in Pacific Palisades, goat cheese mousse with pesto and toasted hazelnuts and assorted cookies
Akira Rose, Maison Akira in Pasadena, cauliflower mousse with bay shrimp and tomato vinaigrette; duck pâté maison with green peppercorn and raisin; roasted marinated bell pepper oni crispy toast, and house smoked salmon with caper on mini crispy toast
Olivier Rousselle, On Sunset at Luxe Sunset Boulevard Hotel, pains bagnat and gazpacho.

Continue reading “Bastille Day – 14 Juillet 2012 Los Angeles” »



by Sophie Gayot


The California foie gras ban that went into effect yesterday has crossed over the boundaries of the Golden State and the Atlantic Ocean. French Correspondent Caroline Connan of Bloomberg TV in Paris had read the two previous pieces I wrote about the subject, and invited me to visit the studio so Parisians could hear what I had to say. Just watch the video above.


Then, after I made a phone call to chef/owner Gilles Epié of the restaurant Citrus Étoile in Paris, and another to Josiah Citrin’s Melisse restaurant in Santa Monica, CA, the Bloomberg TV crews were invited in to speak with the chefs about the new law. Bloomberg TV has titled its piece: “Chef’s Fury at California Foie Gras Ban.”

Continue reading “It is Now Official: No More Foie Gras in California” »



by Sophie Gayot


Frédéric Lefebvre, a former minister in the French government under Nicolas Sarkozy, is coming to the aid of the people opposed to the foie gras ban in California by organizing a petition. Effective July 1, 2012, it will be illegal to sell to produce and to sell the delicacy in the Golden State.


Here is what California Senate bill No. 1520, signed on September 29, 2004, by Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, says (extracts):
CHAPTER 13.4. FORCE FED BIRDS
25980. For purposes of this section, the following terms have the following meanings:
A bird includes, but is not limited to, a duck or goose.
(b) Force feeding a bird means a process that causes the bird to consume more food than a typical bird of the same species would consume voluntarily. Force feeding methods include, but are not limited to, delivering feed through a tube or other device inserted into the bird’s esophagus.
25981. A person may not force feed a bird for the purpose of enlarging the bird’s liver beyond normal size, or hire another person to do so.
25982. A product may not be sold in California if it is the result of force feeding a bird for the purpose of enlarging the bird’s liver beyond normal size.

Continue reading “Say “No” to the Foie Gras Ban in California” »



by Sophie Gayot


In a little more than a month, on July 1st, 2012, foie gras will be illegal in California.


Here is what California Senate bill No. 1520, signed on September 29, 2004, by Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, says (extracts):
CHAPTER 13.4. FORCE FED BIRDS
25980. For purposes of this section, the following terms have the following meanings:
A bird includes, but is not limited to, a duck or goose.
(b) Force feeding a bird means a process that causes the bird to consume more food than a typical bird of the same species would consume voluntarily. Force feeding methods include, but are not limited to, delivering feed through a tube or other device inserted into the bird’s esophagus.
25981. A person may not force feed a bird for the purpose of enlarging the bird’s liver beyond normal size, or hire another person to do so.
25982. A product may not be sold in California if it is the result of force feeding a bird for the purpose of enlarging the bird’s liver beyond normal size.

Continue reading “Foie Gras Ban in California, Really?” »



Susan Irby - Sophie Gayot - Denice Fladeboe Mock - Steve Valentine

In the studios of KABC-AM Los Angeles: Susan Irby, The Bikni Chef. Sophie Gayot, Denice Fladeboe Mock, Steve Valentine

by Sophie Gayot


On Saturday, April 22nd, 2012, I was invited by The Bikini Chef Susan Irby to appear on her weekly radio show Bikini Lifestyle that airs in Los Angeles on AM 790 KABC. Irby and her co-hosts Denice Fladeboe Mock and Steve Valentine kept trying to make me reveal the name of my favorite restaurant. Only one other person knows the answer: my son Alexandre who was also in the studio. But he cannot tell, as I have sworn him to secrecy!


Instead, we discussed the restaurants and chefs which made the GAYOT 2012 Restaurant Issue which include:
Top 40 Restaurants in the U.S
U.S. Best Restaurateur of the Year
Top 10 New Restaurants in the U.S. – great places that opened recently
5 Rising Chefs – American chefs 30 and under who are making their mark
Top 10 Steakhouses in the U.S. – which chefs serve the best steak?
Top 10 Romantic Restaurants in the U.S. – appearing in the Restaurant Issue for the very first time
Top 10 Insider Picks in the U.S. – reveals where to dine for a taste of local flavor, good food and good times.

Continue reading “Talking about GAYOT 2012 Restaurant Issue with The Bikini Chef” »



by Sophie Gayot


To celebrate the rich diversity of the French gastronomic tradition, Frédéric Lefebvre, French Secretary of State for Trade, SMEs, Services, Tourism, the Professions and Consumption, created La Fête de la Gastronomie last year. I had met Mr. Lefebvre at Les Etoiles de Mougins, during the 6th Festival International de la Gastronomie, in September 2011.


This year, for the second edition of La Fête de la Gastronomie, Mr. Lefebvre wants to expand to the U.S. Watch my exclusive video interview with Mr. Lefebvre to get a very first taste of what will take place on September 22, 2012.

Continue reading “La Fête de la Gastronomie 2012 in the U.S.” »



Step up to the Plate - Entre les Bras

Step Up To The Plate (Entre les Bras), French documentary about chef Michel Bras

by Sophie Gayot


The 16th edition of the French film festival “COLCOA, City of Lights, City of Angels” will start next week in LA. This year, Director & Programmer François Truffart and his team have selected fifty-five movies.


One of the documentaries, Step Up To The Plate, Entre les Bras, directed by Paul Lacoste, caught my attention. And if you are a foodie, you should try to see it as well. It is the story of chef Michel Bras at his Le Suquet restaurant in Laguiole in France. How talented is he? In 1988, we crowned him “Chef of the Year” and awarded him a rating of 19.5 (yes 19.5, even better than GAYOT’s top rating of 19 out of 20). Among his emblematic recipes is the Gargouillou, a dazzling mix of vegetables, leaves, fruits and flowers. Bras has decided to retire and let his son Sébastien take over Le Suquet. That will be a difficult task for Sébastien, who must honor his family heritage yet keep innovating as a chef, as his father has done for many years.


For more information, visit http://www.colcoa.org



28

Mar


We have just published our Annual Restaurant Issue, which includes the highly-anticipated Top 40 Restaurants in the U.S. list. The 2012 edition also names chef Jean Joho as U.S. Best Restaurateur of the Year.


Of the Top 40 Restaurants in the U.S. selected, six of them did not appear on last year’s list, and one of those, Menton, is gracing the list for the very first time. Five that made Top 40 lists in earlier years are making a comeback: Frasca Food & Wine, The Herbfarm, Coi, The Inn at Little Washington and TRU. That means that six from last year’s list did not make the cut: Charlie Trotter’s, Thomas Henkelmann, Arrows Restaurant, The Restaurant at Meadowood, The Dining Room (in San Francisco), and L’Escalier.

Continue reading “GAYOT’s 2012 Restaurant Issue” »



Aerated foie gras, pickled beet, mashed plum, brioche at wd-50 restaurant in New York

Aerated foie gras, pickled beet, mashed plum, brioche at wd-50 restaurant in New York

All you ever wanted to know about Molecular food and are disconcerted to learn


by André Gayot


Due to our human condition, eating is an undisputable necessity, a possible pleasure, a subject of sciences (plural), and a topic of reflection. Rising above our basic mammalian status, the Escoffiers and the like succeeded in making eating a pleasure. However, not much has changed since the Stone Age when we knocked out aurochs with bludgeons, dug for roots with a flint, collected grains in the tundra and picked wild apples. As you may recall, the latter eventually generated a serious issue when Adam and Eve were ordered to promptly evacuate Paradise for this misconduct.

Continue reading “Molecular Gastronomy and the Future of Food” »



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